Antique Letterpress and Craftsman Bookbinding



I put the job number on it and to bed sheets and then she got in front for the rent sheet on the back and then it goes to the song here Oh gotcha time so is that little grease rock grease with wads right there on either side on the clock is that like some sort of grease or waxing okay gotcha the old switcheroo obviously to Diesel's at the back and three in the front Wow focus here the reason we can slow block up to 3 inches that once about that far the needles are coming out the back of the book because it's at a slant out cat and everything else is straight down gotcha so that way you can still a book up the floor is just sick on this these ribs down from coming loose and you've also make the book hinges just put water on they're water soluble and then just put 100 pounds of pressure on those books for about 10 seconds I believe that down yeah okay what's that John then I give it a coat of glue on the back of the books they usually do these in twenty five to a hundred at a time so the operation you're not moving in one book all the time and then once it reached a certain consistency I do what we call a wrong name of the book which is this process here okay you know what we do is we put this book on the cutter over there if I take the book body and take a hammer once that glue is a right dis missus you beat that round in there by turning the book till I get the wrong then I require okay we have what we call the backing of the book and that's done on that machine over to the roller you stick it in there put the pressure on and roll that in there you know what that does this was the book hinges okay and it also you know that's where it opens and that's where candidates this is a thickness of the board that's being used for the cover the boards pre-ordered pre-cut if I do 80% of my work is a half 11 stock mm-hmm and the board like I say it's the thickness of this and it comes out what are this actually what we get to this process with a friend we trim the buckle on this that's why we won all three sides on the outer sides are trimmed to fit this board which is 8 3 8 and 10 and 3/4 okay I've seen like that machine behind they have one of those still up WC you publishing with only I think there's a runs on a basic program very early computer program your computer okay the issue I purchased it in 1992 when they shut the binary operation down gotcha and then good to Uniontown okay I retired right there how hard was it to move the entertainer quite easily actually because we just used a forklift and we're gonna truck and my garage doors you just downloaded it here with a forklift catch it right in nice swim with the cutter oh what's the oldest piece of newest piece of equipment the oldest old piece that you have here in the newest piece so all dates from about that same era no 30s 40s yeah Wow this might be okay yeah we ever used the the Chandler & price mechanical one that we have at the Museum and I've gone through you know 20 30 sheets of card stock no foam and that's just a five pound counterweight on the other side I did yeah okay try cuz Williams did you know Bryant a nurse or some what I didn't know him personally but I know who he was and what he did okay so once we get the backing and then we put what I call a headband on which is just decorative okay and a lot of people won't do it anymore I like to do it just gives a character I thought that was something with to do with the actual binding no no no it's just stripped yeah give the book a little character gotcha and most people anymore automatic minders don't do the rounding part for the backing it's also where back and and a wide joint so rounding is just also decorative yes okay but is just I like make it look nice mm-hmm for 50 years and now all these sheets that you're you've got print on is that all done letterpress or is that whoever does it a lot of times that people do it on their own computers anymore no thesis and stuff but letterpress whatever use anything that comes to mind has to be ready to bind when it comes to me the printing all done and the pages are loose so just like curiosity what kind of customers do you have do you have major publishers coming here or I have three publishers Pomeroy to watersville can and and I do a lot of family histories from the various places Spokane and surrounding areas I've done work out of Seattle and then thesis for the university okay do the students themselves have to contact you or do they go through something to drop off 0.2 Moscow at the University wouldn't have the bookie in Pullman and then gh printing downtown informant okay and some people also contact me personally and bring them to me oh yeah depends if they got transportation some people don't so that's what we do the drop off ketchup and of course they gotta pay extra for the other people so our traveling fees more reason yeah that's good and like I say I've had i bind thesis for college and kansas Wow and the reason being one of the students from here got a job at kansas university and they liked what i did in their books over here nice that works what that's uh that's where that goes and I like I said each book has two boards that fits the size of the book smaller books of course we have to cut them down on this hand cutter but most of my work is eight and a half eleven one of them trimming it fits the board that I pre-order okay and then I have 14 different colors of the material with the covers oh wow so you can choose the color they got about a hundred of them out there but I can't stock honors yeah I don't have that kind of volume so it's whatever the customer wants for a color or they get fourteen choices to do that so I I cut the board and then I cut the cloth to fit the boards yes what they call the liner and that is what fits the spine of the book okay that's measured I lay them out on the table measure each book and cut the liner material to fit and then it runs a gluing machine cloth it's a hot glue machine okay that with a piece of cloth through the rollers and attach the boards and the liner and turn the corners and prepare the cover gotcha have a big hot glue gun but also a press that's it and when that's done it goes to the lettering process which is in the other room and actually I set the type on the liner type okay we can set a little of that okay so you got lots of the extra pigs over there okay I took all my dad metal which is the slugs are behind it this was all full of dead metal that's the stuff that's been used that's not needed the N cuts okay well last a while hopefully well yes you in 1991 I bought this was all part of it from here down I've never used yet okay that's the dusters probably cycle it you know a bit it's still a bit more complicated than once we have the museum and it's a lot shinier to back here which is five hundred and sixty degrees of heat ootek has popped and the pigs hang on here they keep the float level here this thing just keeps that pot full okay we have to do before we generally start I think it might be is this is what they call them all keys here that's where all the hot metal comes Auto okay to make them move needs a little cleaning but we start something normally I'd take a small drill with the kind of a lubricant on a chair and seen all these holes off with a hot metal comes out some of the things you don't want to miss a letter because one clog of yeah I don't think it'll ever clog but it's just nicer to have everything put this in here this kind of a lubricant in case you're stuck in there if there's something in there okay then of course you got to have timing each one of these is a different size note type length of bar and all that kind of stuff mm-hmm and I usually run on 18-point we'll have to make sure this is in time with the rest of the machine and it has timing marks on the years that line up with that that's the inners so I gave him on the devil okay and this one has a saw without cat that cuts the slug does it like you want gotcha that's what this guy knows here there's many cams yeah the topic more MORE gotcha well oh sure I want to check the inside get some time they put the plunger and splashes hot metal into thee to the mold and you're not ready move in the jam up your machine here and I just they got some falling over yeah okay and here okay it falls over huh yeah that's good because I'll raise it up our special or active Germans and whatever she answered it yeah the tobots formats somewhere okay Wow and until they break I have to diagnose where those barking pieces are yeah and also special mats that came with it I have different symbols and signs that I can even just put onto the machine and do as well mm-hmm have different call bars different design house at like news decorative borders and that different borders you usually mostly in printing it just came with it so there it is this is the drawer that's missing in the one upstairs okay yeah and it has Greek characters in it and that's why it's up here because I used Greek mm-hmm letters sometimes in certain titles well they're being used more here than they are there so that's done then I take the metal I need to do this this is all dead and I have to refill this stuff before I bring it back in I'm going to do with this let's put this metal on the hot plate this is heated to 250 degrees this is the stamping press which is also heated to 250 I don't have that on today so that basically like a mini chase right there let you have some yeah it's just a chase that holds space you can dig into that okay we have like okay it's pushed into there instantly whatever that's done that's how the stamping is completed of course they've got hydraulics and all that kind of stuff anymore but this good for me yep once that's done and the book is ready to go up which I do right here I put up some papers and set up tonight books up okay I have a book I can show you later okay so when the book is completed you have to start painting recover the body and I take a brush glue on here and over wash the other side we won their Center to cover that do ten books like that and I put them in pairs so they match up size-wise and it puts two books oh wow notice here that's for call a rod board which has a little bit of a metal lip sir mm-hmm and that's where the joint sits catch so you're putting the pressure on the book rather than the spine to break it stack them and then you put the weight on this with two more books rod put your ten books in my kit down ten more put them in and until you get the press full which takes about generally 40 books mm-hm and if you have you know thirty you should close it off at 34 how long did it to be pressed for I brush them a minimum of two hours I like to keep okay I better bonfire keep to warp out those kind of things what's that's done I take him out of there and I checked the books all out picture no wrinkles everything's in order and process them back to the customer nice we're making the middle I have a mole melting machine outside in the patio okay I have a cover over it and it's running on propane mm-hmm this is heated to 600 degrees and I have the molds that I fill with the hot metal on the table know it's an easy caster yes yeah this is a little taller when I bought it and mainly because in the old days it used to make big metal plates up here okay and when they're metal on that then they wanted to make it easy to carry okay so we didn't have to lift me I don't want to work out that yeah there's a handset light machine okay and we have a different sizes and types of maps that we want what type of material okay I think I'll just cast your name how long's your last name it's black beside the color through black two souls 36 so you just take each letter where's the re W but we have spacers over here the different kinds of spaces you want between the words so they're okay did the mono type machines work similar to the little further you arrange them at separately and then a cast on I don't know a lot about the money okay I'm not a yeah I just had to learn this when I moved the bindery here catcha because the printers up there did all my typesetting all I did is go pick it up he was it bring it back they take care of melting reprocessing for the next gotcha so when I bought yes I had to learn how to operate this which I'll probably never will you know did you see how I wasn't one of the bigger person some people are both hands yeah so once this is done see how it works this again has a hot metal pot okay again is the 550 grease and what happens is we twist it down lock the middle down and then out let this dry which it can be pop have a pump water there push it into the moles releases then this machine here grabs a slug everything before you just start this machine for hot because you don't have stuff walked in there and push Wow nice I think you did stuff sit down but area angry backwards listen iyslah hearted lowers okay the advantage of that is the size of pipes that you can go you could do a few titles very easily as opposed to change out a whole magazine yeah that's correct and actually I only do this on larger jobs book and take a while every time consuming yeah so I do maybe 40 to 50 family histories and things and I do this types on this and I can stamp all 50 with the same type yeah Justin there's also the slow process of putting everything back as I understand it there's a printing museum California that found a whole set of these fonts of up for the Ludlow in a scrap yard and they were doing a Kickstarter a fundraiser to try to save them from scrap they have the machine but I guess the fonts are rather hard to find they are they are hard to find actually I was blessed to get this with me because I wouldn't know what I'd do without this guy for my dental school you

8 Comments

  • Pontus Presents

    April 15, 2019

    Very interesting! Thank you for sharing a video of this rare craft! 🙂

    Reply
  • Edward Congdon

    April 15, 2019

    The comment that rounding and backing are only aesthetic is not correct. Especially for individual leaves oversewn as he is doing. The process actually serves to score each sheet close to the spine and enabling easy opening. Sure for a section sewn book it is not that important but it still serves to make the book block fit into the case so when sitting on the self heavy book blocks do not fall forward and come apart at the joint. I suspect that this guy is more of a printer than a binder and unfortunately too many people say they are binders and ruin it for those who do it properly. Just because a person is old does not mean that they know everything !! For example setting the ludlow slugs. He does not know where the letters are without looking and he is setting one letter at a time.. a no no if doing it properly

    Reply
  • allan egleston

    April 15, 2019

    i bought my first computer from a local publisher -graphics artis . the computer drove a printing press the amber screen had burnin from running the control program as they couldnt shut off the computer when running . when new the press cost $1000. dollars . the next year , along came wordstar and obsoleted everything. this is a beautiful historic record.

    Reply
  • Lazy River Letterpress

    April 15, 2019

    Great shop with lots of rare machinery, very cool and a really nice guy explains it all, excellent!

    Reply
  • Ryan Hovey

    April 15, 2019

    This was such a great find. I was looking at home binding and ran across this video. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  • Renato Perito

    April 15, 2019

    I have a machine like this , but I can not make it work.

    Reply
  • ReichHop

    April 15, 2019

    absolutely incredible, i only expected the book binding and some normal letterpress and then the casting machines, i've never seen one of before. REALLY nice video!

    Reply
  • Jordan Sheppherd

    April 15, 2019

    This was cool.  Thank you for posting this

    Reply

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